5 Reasons Why I Need to Listen Better

I need to listen better, all the time. You probably do too. I often think if I can just get other people to listen to me, I’ll get what I want or need. But, the contrary is often true. I seldom even know what I want or need without listening.
  1. I don’t have all the information or knowledge. We often want to think we have all the info, and that we’ve considered every possibility, but we have only considered options visible or known to us.
  2. My perspective, based on limited information, is generally less than ideal. We all make pretty sound decisions based on the information, beliefs and values we hold. But until we consider other’s information, beliefs or values, our own decisions may lack depth and quality.
  3. Without listening and appreciating other’s perspectives, I tend toward a bias favoring my own perspective.
  4. People appreciate appreciation. Since Jesus died for me, I should be free to do what others need. I don’t have to work for my salvation. I simply need to obey Jesus because of what he has done for me. I have nothing to lose.
  5. People are less willing to listen until they’ve been heard. Shouting seems too common these days. Most people have an opinion and are quick to share it. We have “news” programs where people yell at one another about what politicians or celebrities have said or done. We interrupt and yell some more.

GodSpace by Doug Pollock at Amazon.comI would like people to listen. But I’m better when I have listened. I hope today to listen better. Today, I want to ask one more question. Today, I want to be a part of the solution and not part of the problem. Today, I will ask God to speak to me, and then to equip me to listen to those people he brings across my path today.

I’m sure you can come up with other reasons. Would you please list them for me in the comments? Do you have any tips to help you listen better? Do you have any ideas or would you disagree with the logic I laid out in this post? Please share your thoughts and help me improve.

Note: This post was inspired by Doug Pollock, the author of GodSpace and his Listening Resources page.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

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4 Responses

  1. I’ve been trying to focus on being more attentive to the person speaking to me. One thing I’m trying to be more aware of is how much I fidget or move my hands during a conversation. I think my body language could be sending signals contrary to attentive listening. If I don’t have time for the conversation I need to say so, otherwise I need to bring my best to the conversation.

  2. Mike, Thank you for being open. For me I am a terrible listener and need to do better. I was looking at your resource note and went to the article you reference. Doug made a great statement. “the number one question most Christians ask concerning evangelism; how do I start and continue authentic spiritual conversations?” And it hit me. I need to listen. If I listen to all they say. Then I my or might have the opportunity to share with them too. But it all starts with listening.

    1. Thanks David! It “hit” me, too. Thanks for the comment. GodSpace is a great book to help us think about and God while we interact with (and listen to) others.

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